Target: Vijay Barve, researcher and doctoral candidate at the University of Kansas
Goal: Thank a biodiversity researcher for utilizing social media to save wildlife
Researchers have found a new way to study animals by using the numerous photos that are uploaded daily on personal social media accounts. Vijay Barve, a doctoral candidate at the University of Kansas shared his findings of over 46,000 photos of monarch butterflies on a photo-sharing site. People take snapshots of the butterflies and even tag their exact location. This information is extremely useful to researchers and scientists who are studying the devastating decline of the butterflies over the past 20 years.
Social media can serve as a very powerful tool for scientists. It is easily accessible, inexpensive, and does not require a lot to gather information. As long as the researchers have access to the Internet, the tools are all there for them to use. This means that anybody with a camera can help researchers collect data about animals all around the world. Photos uploaded by travelers and families on vacation are sources of biological data waiting to be gathered and studied.
Barve has published his incredible findings about uncovering biodiversity data from social networking sites. He explains in his research how social networking sites have a rich collection of untapped data and how the data can be used to supplement existing studies.
Please sign this petition to thank Vijay Barve for helping researchers discover the effectiveness of utilizing social media to help save animals.
Dear Vijay Barve,
Most of the world uses social media to share pictures of their family, friends, and the places they visit. It is amazing that you have found a tool that is so beneficial to the animal world. You have taken photos that people post on sites like Flickr and Facebook and have used them to study the biodiversity of animals that are on the verge of extinction.
This tool can help researchers discover information that they would not have the fundings to gather themselves. You gave an example of the monarch butterfly, which has been on the verge of extinction for the past 20 years. If someone using social media were to post a photo of the butterflies in various different countries, researchers would be able to study the impact of climate change on the butterflies.
Thank you for finding this easy and inexpensive way for researchers to save animals.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Richiebits via Wikimedia Commons